Saturday, March 29, 2014

laying bare // i . can . breathe

Honestly, it’s a sigh of relief.
It’s the exhale of air from deep within, which has been hanging in your chest – and weighing on your mind - for far too long now.
It’s the feeling of breathlessness and being able to breathe again, all in one.
I feel breathless, yet a can breathe.
I can breathe.
I.  Can. Breathe.

I can breathe, yet I can’t weep.
To let that first tear fall is almost too much.
Too much, too soon.
Too real.
And I can feel it again – that tense and tight movement in my chest, willing me to hold my breath.
To hold it, so I don’t weep.

Don’t weep.
It’s all I tell myself.
Don’t weep. Do not weep.

But you take that breath.
And you weep.
Your mind is overcome by the emotion of it all, so you just weep.
The body shakes, the heart breaks.

And then, you breathe.


It was the phone call that I knew was coming. "It could be days or weeks", but I knew it would be here before too long. 
And it's funny, because you almost seem to know that this is the call. When I saw the screen light up, I just knew.
Being semi-estranged from your family does that, I guess. You assume that most news, is bad news. 
Perhaps, 6:30am was really the giveaway? 

Shirley Alison Thomson, you were one special lady. 
Strong-willed and opinionated you wore the pant(y-hose) for sure, and no one looked better in coral lipstick than you.
Though that terrorizing, fucking nasty disease was much more than you deserved, I will hold dear those memories of one splendidly-batty old woman - who stashed (and forgot about) several McDonald's Whipped Butters in her purse, almost had had us headed on an express train for Hervey Bay, and swore that she was "not old enough to have children" at her husbands 70th Birthday party. Your mind was unkind to you, and perhaps we could have done more. Understood more, sympathised more. 
Now, you suffer no more.

So, here we are. One less in this clan. 
Almost 3 years to the day, since we lost Papa,

your darling gentleman. 

May you be at peace. Together again.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

laying bare // a reminder

"sometimes you can't see yourself clearly, until you see yourself through the eyes of others" 
- Ellen DeGenerous 

I have received several rather honest, heartfelt and deeply humbling emails lately. 
Their authors, from across land and sea, took precious time to write of their own life. They shared their highs and lows with me, and somewhere in each of their sentiments they had very kind (and very humbling) words to share about me. I guess I never realized my words, my images and my 'story' had an impact on others. 

Honestly, much of sharing my life online comes from a pretty self-satisfying (read: mildly narcissistic) place. I enjoy the creativity, the community and the never-ending inspiration. I guess I never really imagined that what I shared could actually be that inspiration for others. 
Simply put, I now see myself in a new light. Rather than taking, taking, taking from this community, I hope to give a little hope and happiness back. No matter your circumstances, your lifestyle - your past present or future - your story and your words mean so much to me. 

I captured this image of myself last night; after work, just before I jumped in the shower. Covered in coffee grounds and sweat, with smeared makeup and a nice new pimple forming on my cheek. I am reminded that external beauty isn't what's most important in my life, nor is it what those people recognised in their words to me. This image is a reminder to myself to continue to lay it all bare. 

A beautiful mind and soul will always be more desirable than external beauty alone.

This image and my words were originally posted via my instagram account - I want to share it here also, as this is were it all originated. You, my readers, the beautiful souls that come here, to share in life with me, are the reason for this revelation. Thank you for your blessed words and sincere companionship. It truly means the world. xx 

Friday, February 14, 2014

friendship, it's hard


I long for the days when friendship was easy.
Seeing your 'best friend' (or friends, if you were lucky) in the school yard every day,
or living with them throughout your college years (until you realised that his lack of personal hygiene or her all-night-long sexual encounters were never ideal for communal living!)
those were the days when friendships were easy.

Abandoned more times than I'd like to share.
Scarred and broken,
a little more weary, a little less trusting.

Yet with so much love and companionship,
to give, to share, to express.
But it's all too hard now;
now that I know the pain of love lost, of friendships sunk.

Now, I build walls and mask myself.
It's easier and safer,
but it's lonelier.

than ever.

*my younger, more trusting and a little too naive self. 'Sarah' by Kiara Cheetham, 2008

Friday, January 31, 2014

healthy life - banana-less bread

If you've been visiting this humble space for a while you might remember when I posted back here about my banana allergy and the unfortunate circumstance of not being able to indulge in the delicious (I assume, from the divine aroma it emits) treat, Banana Bread.

For so long I've searched for an appropriate substitution for the fruit, knowing full well that I may never be able to replicate its smooth texture and subtly sweet offerings. Avocado worked well for smoothies but I was unsure of how it would hold up being baked.
So yesterday afternoon, as the wind whipped around our house and the mercury dropped unnaturally low for January in Queensland, I popped on an apron and set out to bake a sweet loaf. After a few minutes on our trusty mate Google, I discovered just what I was looking for - apple purée! Now why hadn't I thought of that?

I then clicked over to one of my favourite foodie havens, to find inspiration in their Spelt Banana Bread recipe, tweaking it a little to serve my messed-up body's crazy aversion to the yellow fruit.
I swapped the unrefined cane sugar for a 50/50 mix of dark brown sugar and raw caster sugar, the butter for coconut oil, golden syrup for agave syrup, and of course the bananas for apple purée. (I also added a couple dark chocolate pieces to satisfy my pms monster. A girls gotta satisfy that choc craving somehow!)
Simply mix the wet into the dry, pour into a loaf tin and bake for an hour.

Although I'm sure  it doesn't have the typical banana bread flavours, it surely looks and feels like the moist, dense and subtly sweet loaf of my dreams. I am quite pleased with myself.
What I am not pleased with however, is the mistake I made of falling asleep, sitting up nonetheless, before I could turn my glorious creation out and put it safely away. I shouldn't have been surprised to find it half eaten by two naughty little felines.
All is well though, that tiny smidge on the end up there was rescued for breakfast this morning, served alongside home-made natural yoghurt with a drizzle of agave syrup and two piping hot espresso. Alls well that ends well, right?
boy oh boy did they enjoy themselves!
Do you have any tips or ideas for subsituting banana? I'd love to know!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

being present // two

There's nothing quite like taking stock to keep you in the present. Simply put, this is life as we know it, right now.

Making : a 'scrap book' filled with inspiring interiors, a mood board of sorts, for everything I...and we, desire for our future homes (am I the only one who stills tears pages out of glossy lifestyle magazines and catalogues and files them away in notebooks?)

Cooking : a nourishing breakfast of light rye toast topped with my favourite sheeps fetta marinated in sun-dried tomatoes (okay, so not really Cooking, more like Assembling...)
Drinking : coffee! A delicious Single Origin from India with lightly textured organic almond milk. Yep, I'm a coffee wanker...but it's my job! 
Reading: Lonely Planet Canada, a wonderfully thoughtful Christmas gift from a close friend.
Wanting:this lust-worthy skirt in print 3 and this blanket in teal, for our bed
Looking: forward to the season change, something I never though this sunny Queensland, Summer-loving gal would say, but these 40°C are trying
Playing: Happy over and over and over again. How could you not be happy after experiencing such an awesome song?
Deciding: on what I should tell the hairdresser when I see her next. I know she wont like it when I say "keep the length"...
Wishing: we lived closer to our closest friends. A northern hemisphere migration couldn't come fast enough
Enjoying: the glow of candle light as I wait for the sun to rise
Waiting: for Sam to wake up...but she's pretty damn gorgeous while asleep
Liking: how Sam just woke up and summoned me back to bed for a snuggle
Wondering: what suburbs we should be looking at in Melbourne
Loving: all the signs of love I'm seeing in the world around me, possibly prompted by our upcoming 'wedding' anniversary
Pondering: how I will ever fulfil all the things on my 'I want to' list...  

*We apologise for this interruption to your current viewing as Sarah has to go to work*
*8 hours later...*

Considering: popping Sam on a plane bound for Maine, to visit a dear friend. Sometimes you just need to make a friends day a little brighter by surprising them with an impromptu visit
Watching: dark, ominous clouds engulfing the blue sky outside the window
Marvelling: at the miracle of life - so many beautiful people announcing the growth of their family or welcoming their wee bundles of joy into the world! 
Needing: a day off. I'm so thankful tomorrow is Sunday!
Smelling: the honey and goats milk treatment I slathered onto my hair last night in the hopes of taming this frizzy mop
Wearing: my usual 'just got home from work' attire, yoga pants and a mens tank, oh and the subtle scent of coffee grinds under my nails. Keepin it classy.
Following: this loved up couple as they marry their way across the globe
Noticing: how much my health has changed in the past 12 months - less pain and inflammation in my joints, better sight, strong nails and clear skin - a healthy lifestyle and positive outlook on life really does improve your health!
Knowing: this is our last Summer in this sunny state, reminding myself to not take these last few months for granted
Thinking: of what I should gift to Sam for our second anniversary. Cotton sheets, perhaps?
Admiring: the stunning creations of wood|GLASS designs  - oh those stunning chimes necklaces *sigh*
Sorting: through my feelings, purging foul thoughts and cleansing my heart of fear and 
Buying: nothing in particular. We're trying to limit unnecessary spending and build our savings back up after the flogging it got over the 'silly season'. 
Getting: excited and anxious about seeing our dreams coming to fruition
Bookmarking: the awesome website, Common Threads, launched by the equally awesome Sash of Inked in Colour. Make sure you bookmark this beautiful space too. You'll be glad you did!
Disliking: the painfully dry skin on my hands (any suggestions for natural and/or home made remedies for dermatitis and severely dry skin are welcome!)
Opening: way too many bills...and not enough pretty packages

Giggling: at the furbabies cleaning each other in a sort of 'licking circle' and getting upset at each other when the don't do it just right
Feeling: overwhelmed with love and admiration for my beautiful wife. She truly is my better half

joining with Pip!